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How Two Minutes Saved Me $72.98

by Shawanda Greene

Fixya logoI’m not one for fixing things.

If I snag a sweater or tear a hole in a pair of jeans, I don’t repair them. I keep right on rocking my raggedy stuff until the imperfections are noticeable to others.

Basically, I wait until strangers mistake me for a homeless person.

Electronics are another matter. When they stop working, I’m done with them. I don’t break out a butter knife and pry open the gadget to see if I can find what went wrong. Around my house, dead electronics are either tossed in the trash or tucked out of sight and forgotten.

A few days ago, my Wii almost met a premature end. I pressed the power button, but nothing happened. I tried to turn the Wii on a few more times, unplugged it from the wall, disconnected its cables, reconnected the cables, plugged it back into the wall, pressed the power button again, and still…nothing.

In a last ditch effort to jolt it back to life, I did what any resourceful, borderline genius would do.

I shook it.

Surprisingly, that didn’t work.

Defeated, I searched for someone to blame. Since an Airbnb guest had recently vacated my apartment, I concluded she must’ve broken it.

I had one guest who broke my coffee pot and ate two of my sausages without permission. Since then, I think the worst of my guests.

I suspect they:

  • Steal from me,
  • Drink directly out of the milk carton,
  • Wear my undies, or
  • Steal my stuff while drinking directly out of the milk carton and wearing my undies.

But honestly, with the exception of the sausage eater, all my guests have been world class.

I quickly shifted my attention towards an actual solution to the problem: replacing the Wii. If you think I headed to Craigslist or Gamestop for a used one, you’re wrong. The only purpose my Wii serves is to stream video from Netflix. As a result, a Roku would suffice.

Unfortunately, the entry level Roku retails for a base price of $59.99. Add sales tax and shipping, and we’re up to $72.98. Spending that kinda money requires a little meditation. I held off on making a purchase decision for a few days and waited for the universe to provide an answer.

While hunting for some You Have More Than You Think blog fodder for my dear readers, I came across a really cool website called Fixya. This was the first I’d heard of it.

“FixYa is the easy-to-use, fast and free problem solving service that connects people with Experts on everything at any time, wherever they are.

I’d already tried everything I knew to fix my Wii. It doesn’t cost anything to type a few words, so I entered “Wii won’t turn on” in Fixya’s search box. The answer popped up immediately.

All I had to do was unplug my Wii from the power outlet for two minutes, then plug it back in. That’s it.

I pressed the power button again.

It worked!

And I saved myself the equivalent of 4 boxes of wine.

How much have you saved by repairing rather than replacing?

This article was featured in the TOTALLY MONEY CARNIVAL #36: FOOTBALL IS BACK EDITION at Money Beagle.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Tim September 16, 2011 at 3:32 PM

Fixya is a great site. There are many great blogs on how to fix things. I spend about 1/2 hour last night and saved at least a diagnostic charge on my wife's car (2002 Taurus). Her heater started blowing hot air only, I went on to the Taurus Club of Ameria web site and looked in their forums. They had the procedure to get the trouble code from the climate control, what the code meant and how to clear the code which can sometimes fix the problem. In out case clearing the code fixed the problem. Before spending big bucks or throwing it out, google it!

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